HELP! 2 week old chick with bumps! Fowl pox? Marek's?


In the Brooder
Jul 9, 2018
HELP! This two week old chick has a large bump by his mouth, a smaller one by his eye, & another on his back. He seems to be eating, drinking, & acting normally. What am I dealing with here? I've never had to cull a chick, but I don't want Marek's or Fowl Pox killing my flock. If possible, I'd love to save him, BUT not at the expense of my flock.


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I'm sure someone will step in that actually knows what it is but if it makes you feel better it doesn't look like any kind of fowl pox or mareks that I've ever seen! My guess would be stings or bites of some kind maybe?
That could possibly be fowl pox, since it usually appears more like lumps on young chicks. Could there have been pecking by older chickens? Fowl pox can be very hard on baby chicks, and the eyes may be swollen with scabs making it hard to see food and water. There is no treatment, bu some apply Betadine to scabs to help them dry out. Scabs are contagious, even after they drop off, so do not disturb them. Here is some reading about pox:

Below is a baby chick with suspected fowl pox:

I would not cull for fowl pox unless the bird was doing so poorly it was suffering and not likely to recover. With dry pox it will usually run it's course and they recover. If it becomes wet pox, with lesions in the beak and throat then it can be more serious and require more care. Once they recover they should be resistant to that strain, and your older birds may already be resistant. Just make sure it's eating and drinking well.
He is in a coop with 10 other chickens. The adults have easy access to the outdoors but the chick doesn't. The coop in attached to an enclosed area which has access to. I should note that the bumps are getting larger by the day. They are firm & not movable.
And my kids at school have eggs in an incubator which are due to hatch tomorrow & come home with me. I certainly don't want them to get sick.
I was just on the phone with a poultry vet in Gainesville, Florida. He assured me the virus would run its course and my chickens would have immunity. He reiterated to keep the water fresh, even if I had to put in fresh water daily. Of course, I live in Florida where mosquitoes are rampant in some areas. The south is very hot and humid that is a good breeding area for them.
Updated pic attached. The first lump continues to get larger & darker. There is a second lump beside his eye & another forming on the opposite side of his face.


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The chick doesn’t look as bad as pictures I have seen of some though. Have a look inside the beak with a flashlight when you have an extra pair of hands, to look for any yellow plaques that could be wet pox, the more serious type. Pox is always more of a problem in hot humid areas with many mosquitoes. Even with our weather in the Ohio valley, I have only seen one fowl pox scab on a single chicken before.

Pox may stay in your flock for several months since it can spread when the scabs dry up and fall off, and become powdery and are inhaled by other chickens. There is a vaccine that some use for chickens not yet having signs. Unfortunately while older chickens recover much more easily, any new chicks will face more of a problem. Screens over windows and strips of screen over doorways can help some to control mosquitoes. Keeping young chicks inside the house may protect them until they are a little older, but the dander and dust can be hard to handle.

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